PALEO DIET VS. NUTRITIONAL BALANCING
by Dr. Lawrence Wilson
© June 2013, L.D. Wilson Consultants, Inc.
All information in this article is for educational purposes only. It is not for the diagnosis, treatment, prescription or cure of any disease or health condition.
A popular diet today is called the paleo diet. The name comes from the word Paleolithic. This describes a time in history when mankind did not cultivate grain or domesticate animals, and instead lived as a hunter and gatherer.
Therefore, the diet omits all grains and all dairy products. It also omits legumes, some starchy root vegetables, and all refined foods, such as refined sugars. It also omits oils made from grains such as corn oil and other common oils as well, as these are refined food products.
Instead, the diet suggests lots of meat and eggs, fruit, and most vegetables, nuts and seeds, as long as they can be eaten raw. It also suggests mostly eating food raw or minimally processed.
This diet helps many people feel better and can help with weight loss if it is done right. The reasons are mainly because it reduces carbohydrates that people eat too much of, and many people have sensitivity to wheat and commercial dairy, in particular, which it eliminates. While these aspects are helpful, especially eliminating refined sugars and refined food, I do not recommend this diet. The reasons are:
1. Too yin. Yin foods on this diet include all fruit, nuts, seeds, salads and all other raw foods, including raw meat and raw eggs. Yin foods also include coconut oil, avocado, and palm oil, which are recommended. Any diet today that includes any of these foods will be quite yin in Chinese medical terms.
2. Too restrictive. I find that a small amount of whole grain, but not wheat, is helpful and actually needed by many people. If you donŐt tolerate grains, skip them for now, but try again in a few months if you are following a nutritional balancing program, as they are helpful in small amounts. As the intestines heal on a nutritional balancing program, most people can handle some whole grain after a while.
I also find that a small amount of raw or organic butter, cream, milk, cheese or yogurt from healthful sources are excellent for most people if one tolerates them. If they are not tolerated, then leave them alone. However, after following a nutritional balancing program for several months, many people begin to tolerate good quality raw dairy products. Limit milk to 4 ounces daily, however, as too much is yin, once again.
3. Too raw. I find empirically that one cannot absorb enough minerals from raw vegetables. Eating raw meat and raw eggs, as some suggest, is dangerous as they can contain harmful bacteria.
4. Serious problems with fish, shellfish. While these perhaps were wonderful foods at one time, today the fish and shellfish are full of mercury, lead, and perhaps other toxic metals. I find that fish are all contaminated, except for up to 4 cans of sardines weekly because of their small size. Particularly avoid the large fish like tuna, mackerel, and others.
Seafood and shellfish are much more contaminated than most fish, perhaps because they are caught in coastal waters that are more contaminated, or just due to their nature! I would stay far away from them, even if they are tasty and feel good when eaten. Hair tests always reveal who is eating fish and seafood by the high mercury levels and other high toxic metal levels, at times.
5. Serious problems with all pig products. Pork, ham and all pig products are often contaminated with trichina cysts. They are also scavenger animals that eat garbage, in most nations. The only exception, so far, is that freeze-dried pig pancreas or pancreatin seems to cause no problems.
The kosher laws forbid pig products, and there is a reason for it. I am surprised that many Christians ignore these laws, as they make some sense. For more on this topic, read The Kosher Laws And Your Health on this site.
6. Not enough cooked vegetables, and too much of other foods such as meats, eggs, nuts, seeds, fruits and fish. We find that people need about 70-80% cooked vegetables in the diet today. A higher fat diet, which is how many people eat on the Paleo diet, can and often does lead to cancer eventually. This occurs because it does not detoxify the body enough, and it does not supply enough of the alkaline minerals that are found mainly in cooked vegetables, and not in other foods.
7. No emphasis on the need for supplements today, and avoiding toxic metals. I wish supplements were not necessary, but I find as a doctor that food supplements are essential for optimum health today. All of our food is low in nutrients, today, and the correct supplements are excellent to balance, detoxify and strengthen the body and mind, in various ways. This is discussed in other articles on this site such as The Healing Lifestyle.
8. Be careful of the romance of this diet. For example, while the diet may sound and feel good, Paleolithic people did not live very long. Today, the Japanese are the longest lived and healthiest large population, and they live on a lot of rice and a lot of cooked, not raw vegetables. So beware.
To read more about how I suggest eating, read the Fast Oxidizer Diet and the Slow Oxidizer Diet. Note that a properly performed hair mineral analysis is needed to assess if one is in fast or slow oxidation. Guessing is okay, but not always accurate. Many other articles on this website discuss various aspects of diet in much more detail.